Category Archives: Tryon

Conor Swail and Cenzo Win $35k 1.45m Horseware Ireland Opener CSI 5* at Tryon Fall V

Conor Swail and Cenzo. Photo ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – October 19, 2016 – Conor Swail (IRL) and Cenzo narrowly edged fellow Irishman Shane Sweetnam and Cornwall for the win in the $35,000 1.45m Horseware® Ireland Opener CSI 5* to begin the week of international competition during Tryon Fall V at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). Swail and Cenzo made quick work of the jump-off track as the last pair to enter the George H. Morris Arena, securing a time of 35.056 seconds. Sweetnam (IRL) and Cornwall crossed through the timers in 35.582 seconds for second place honors, while Kent Farrington (USA) and Willow earned third with a time of 35.596 seconds.

In Swail’s first appearance at TIEC this season, the veteran Irish rider guided Cenzo, a 2007 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Harley VDL x Cavalier) owned by Ilan Ferder & Tal Milstein to first place in the class, which featured a strong count of 50 entries. The pair drew late in the order and capitalized on their additional time to observe the other 14 combinations qualified to test the jump-off track set by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA). Seventeen original pairs qualified for the jump-off round while three combinations decided to voluntarily withdraw before the start.

“I thought that it was a nice course for the first day and there were a few questions there. It was certainly a careful course. The jump-off ended up quite fast,” explained Swail. “I went last so I was able to watch how everything had gone and unfolded in front of me.”

“Basically, when I went in I knew that my horse was going to have to go very fast and do everything well. Thankfully today, that’s how it worked out for us,” he added, commenting on his strategy for the short course, which saw the top four combinations finish less than seven-tenths of a second within his winning time.

Swail has established a successful relationship with the gelding throughout the year, as he took over the ride this past winter season and has placed in numerous FEI competitions, garnering top five finishes in Wellington, FL, Coapexpan, Mexico, Spruce Meadows, Canada, and St. Lô, France.

“I started riding him in Florida at the start of the year and he’s owned by Ilan Ferder,” he elaborated. “He’s a very good jumper but can be a little bit difficult to ride. He’s brave and scopey though. We’ve had a reasonably successful year with him and it’s nice to finish up feeling like we’re progressing well.”

Cenzo is still young and is gaining valuable experience with Swail piloting from the irons, but looks to be a strong mount for the future. His adjustability stands out as a quality that will be essential to his development in international competition next season.

“His strengths are that he is careful and has a big step, but also has a short step as well. Equally, when we need to balance and put in that step he does it quickly and whenever we need to leave a stride out he does that quickly. I think with those attributes it makes him a fast horse,” noted Swail.

Swail will compete two horses this week in the highly anticipated FEI CSI 5* at the venue and feels the “luck of the Irish” may be playing in his favor for the remainder of the week.

“From what I see so far this is an amazing facility. There’s a lot of space to ride your horse with beautiful stables and a good arena. For me, it’s great that I started with a winning round here,” he smiled. “I do believe that I have lucky shows and unlucky shows. The way that this is starting off, it looks like it’s going to be a good one.”

For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

Shane Sweetnam Concludes Tryon Fall IV with Win in $25,000 Tryon Resort Grand Prix

Shane Sweetnam and Cornwall. Photos ©Sportfot.

Luis Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ Fly through Timers to Capture $25,000 U25 Grand Prix; Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Series Concludes

Mill Spring, NC – October 16, 2016 – Shane Sweetnam of Wellington, FL and Cornwall earned top honors in the $25,000 Tryon Resort Grand Prix on the Grass Complex at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) to conclude competition at Tryon Fall IV. Sweetnam and Cornwall completed the jump-off track in 37.838 seconds ahead of Emanuel Andrade of Wellington, FL and Boy IV who crossed through the timers in 40.399 seconds. Darragh Kerins of Wellington, FL and Rebeca LS completed the final double clear effort of the class, completing the track with a time of 48.176 seconds.

Sweetnam and Cornwall, a 2008 Holsteiner stallion (Con Air x Cambridge) owned by Siboney Ranch, bested the class of 31 entries, riding to a smooth first round on the track set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN). The jump-off featured nine combinations and only the top three finishers completed both rounds of the class without faults.

“Michel did a great job today and I thought that it was a very nice course. It was big enough and not too technical I thought,” explained Sweetnam. “It was nice that the horses who were going to do this class had the opportunity to compete on the grass on Friday as well. The class had the right number of clears with nine and that always makes for an exciting jump-off.”

Cornwall is typically ridden by Sweetnam’s client, Kaley Tomeu, who sustained and injury and turned over the reins to her trainer while she recovers. The talented young stallion gained competition experience on both the turf and in the George H. Morris Arena this week, as Sweetnam contested the $35,000 1.45m Horseware® Ireland Opener CSI 3* and placed second, as well as the $8,000 1.40m Open Jumper Classic presented by Nutrena®.

“He’s only eight and belongs to Kaley Tomeu. She typically rides him but broke her collar bone so I’ll have the ride on him for the next few months. I’m just starting to get the hang of him now and we’re getting together a bit more,” he commented. “We’re aiming him for the last indoor competition in Kentucky. He’s very talented so I’m looking forward to seeing him progress over the next few months.”

Sweetnam finished a strong week of competition at TIEC after collecting first and second place finishes aboard Cornwall, and a top finish with second mount, Main Road, in the $130,000 Suncast® Grand Prix CSI 3* on Saturday night. Sweetnam continues to produce and compete a strong string of horses, which will play a major role in his success over the next few weeks.

“I have other horse Chaqui Z competing next week in the CSI 5*, as well as Cornwall and Main Road, who finished second in the class last night. I’ll then have to rotate the horses a bit as we’re going to go to indoors after,” commented Sweetnam. “I’m really lucky that I have such a strong string and they’re all getting mileage. Cornwall is a nice addition.”

The Grass Complex at TIEC is the newest addition to the expanding facility, allowing horse and rider combinations to experience unique competition opportunities on different footing surfaces. Sweetnam is looking forward to the potential of the complex and was pleased with the performance of Cornwall in both outings on the turf.

“Today the footing already feels like it’s opening up a bit since Friday and I think that as we continue to compete over the next few weeks it will continue to get better. The horses are all jumping well on it. I think it’s going to be a very exciting venue for competition in the future and is a great addition to this facility.”

Luis Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ Fly through Timers to Capture $25,000 U25 Grand Prix

Luis Larrazabal of Wellington, FL and his mount Atlodetto FZ dominated the $25,000 U25 Grand Prix at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) with an incredible jump-off time of 36.934 seconds. Taylor Alexander of Castle Rock, CO and Gipsy King trailed closely behind, securing second place with a time of 36.948 seconds, while Adrienne Sternlicht of Greenwhich, CT and Helios earned third place honors with a time of 39.00 seconds.

Luis Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ
Luis Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ

Luis Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ, owned by San Francisco Stables LLC, have been partners for almost two years and are building their confidence together as they gain more competition experience. The pair has been based at TIEC all summer, competing in multiple 1.30m and 1.40m classes.

Larrazabal chuckled as he described his strategy going into the jump-off track set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN), saying, “My plan was just to go for a conservative round. Taylor Alexander had a crazy fast time and I didn’t think my horse was ready for that speed. I jumped the first oxer and was good to fence two and three, so I got excited.”

“After the double I knew I was coming close to winning,” he continued, detailing his ride. “After the liverpool, I did a short roll back, galloped down to the last oxer, and as soon as I landed I knew I had the time.”

The victory came as a bit of a shock to Larrazabal, which made the victory that much sweeter. The pair have had success moving through the levels and today was a highlight for Larrazabal, as clinching victory in a competitive U25 class is always thrilling.

“I really swear that was not my plan,” he laughed. “Of course I wanted to be clear and fast, but I was not out to beat that time. It was my lucky day for sure.”

Larrazabal and his team are looking forward to heading to the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), as he plans to show Atlodetto FZ in ranking classes and possibly in the Nations’ Cup representing his home nation of Venezuela.

“We’re taking it slow and step by step. He is very confident right now, so when he’s ready for the bigger classes he will show me,” he continued.

Larrazabal nearly took another win today, also jumping clear in the $25,000 Tryon Resort Grand Prix aboard Quintus Fabius. Larrazabal commented on the new Grass Complex at TIEC, stating, “Jumping on the grass is like dreaming. The footing is immaculate. I showed Friday on the grass and today as well. I actually retired one of my horses from the U25 Grand Prix after two unfortunate rails and decided to enter him in the class out on the turf and we ended up ninth. I just wanted to jump on the grass field!”

Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Series Concludes at Tryon International Equestrian Center Showcasing Five Divisions of Top Hunter Competition

The Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Series concluded at Tryon International Equestrian Center, hosting the best of hunter competition in the region. The week featured five divisions allowing riders of all ages and experience levels the opportunity to compete for top prizes in the George H. Morris Arena.

Kara Jones of Cornelius, NC secured first and second place in the $10,000 Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Junior Hunter class, piloting her own Joyful to first place with a two round score of 160 and Cristallo, owned by Long’s Stable LLC, to second after receiving a 146. Kendall Edwards of Charlotte, NC and her own Quarterback took third place honors in the class after earning a 144 from the judging panel.

The $10,000 Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Amateur-Owner Hunter was championed by Alexandra Maracic of Syosset, NY guided her own Lucky Times to victory after accumulating a two round score of 169. Ashley Hodges of Greensboro, NC and Jet Stream K, owned by Sloan Hodges, rode to second place with a final score of 163, while Lynn Seithel of John’s Island, SC took home third place aboard her own Versace.

Courtney Canizares of Elon, NC guided her own Kiera to victory in the $10,000 Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Adult-Amateur after completing two rounds in the George H. Morris Arena to earn a total score of 167. Vicki Autry of Greensboro, NC and her own Toltec rode to second place honors after receiving a 164. Kimberly Penfold of Lake Bluff, IL and The Spy, owned by Glory Days Farm, LLC, followed closely behind with a two round score of 163.

The $10,000 Carolinas’ Challenge Cup Children’s Hunter class was topped by Catherine Sharp of Tryon, NC and her own Imperio after receiving an 80 from the judging panel in the first round and a score of 75 in the second round for a total of 155. Ann Gray Stedman of Charlotte, NC and her own Winter Romance took second place after riding to a final score of 138, while Isabel Stedman of Charlotte, NC and Arrow K collected third place honors with a 120.

The 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District offers six weeks of hunter and jumper competition, including three weeks of internationally recognized FEI show jumping featuring two FEI CSI 3* weeks and an FEI CSI 5*. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

Andy Kocher Guides Zantos II to Win in $130,000 Suncast Grand Prix CSI 3* at Tryon

Andy Kocher and Zantos II. Photo ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – October 15, 2016 – Andy Kocher (USA) piloted Zantos II to the pair’s second victory this week, taking top honors in the competitive $130,000 Suncast® Grand Prix CSI 3* at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). Kocher and Zantos II dashed through the jump-off timers, finishing nearly two seconds faster than the rest of the field, stopping the clock in 35.836 seconds. Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Main Road finished in second place, crossing through the finish in 37.982 seconds, while Adrienne Sternlicht (USA) piloted Toulago to third place with a time of 38.238 seconds.

Kocher and Zantos II, owned by MKO Equestrian LLC, finished a strong effort in the first round, contesting a technical track set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN), which featured 51 entries. After making a quick move in the jump-off, the duo secured the win to best the eight-horse jump-off.

“I made a few mistakes on my first horse but this little guy is just so fast. I knew that we weren’t going to have time faults, but I wanted to not hit the in-fence of the combinations, especially if it was a vertical. He typically doesn’t have rails, but if he will tap one that’s where it will be,” commented Kocher. “We had a bit of trouble warming up to be honest because he was still so excited from how fast we went on Thursday. I had to get on and off of him a few times to get him to relax a bit.”

Zantos II has proven he’s a top contender for Kocher, who initially believed the gelding would be a good sales prospect when he arrived from England earlier this summer. After collecting a win in the $35,000 1.50m Suncast® Welcome FEI CSI 3* on Thursday, October 13, he felt confident that the pair could secure a fast finish in tonight’s class, but did not expect to earn another win. As Kocher has learned and adjusted to the ride, he believes the pair has found common ground when competing in the ring through the help of a few bit adjustments.

He laughed, “I was informed today by my owners after this class that he is no longer going to be a sales project. He’s just a little bullet and we’ve found a bridle that’s a happy medium for him.

“This win really means a lot to me. My dad is from here and he’s been in this area from the beginning. When I competed here last year, it was in some of the biggest classes I’ve ever done in my entire life. I came back this year aiming to qualify for FEI World Cup Finals and we’ve had an exciting season so far.”

The two horses Kocher had entered this week in international competition are both new additions to his string and program, as he is saving his ace ride, Uppie De Lis, for larger classes later this season. Kocher noted that the horses have helped to fine tune his own skills, as he cannot make as many mistakes as a rider to ensure they produce clear rounds.

“This is a big deal for both of them, but especially Zantos. They have to stretch to jump this high and I can’t make too many errors as a rider. I pushed myself this fall and the results are starting to pay off. I haven’t had all great shows, but this week has just been amazing.”

Looking ahead, Kocher has plans to now contest the indoor circuit in order to gain valuable qualifying points ahead of FEI World Cup Finals, before setting his sights on a strong winter campaign at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

“I think we’re going to try and do a lot more FEI classes next year. That’s really going to be the focus. I want to get world-ranking points so that we can start getting into some bigger shows. I’d like to get high enough up the rankings that I could go to whatever shows we wanted. That’s the big goal for me right now,” he elaborated. “I have to thank the owners too, Bob and Robin Mulkey, we each own a third of him and they’ve been great owners for me.”

Kocher’s groom, Cesar Uribe, was awarded with the Groom’s Initiative Award presented by Tryon Equestrian Partners (TEP), in an effort to recognize the dedication and passion of the individuals who play an integral role in the success of top horse and rider combinations. Kocher graciously spoke of Uribe, who joined his team just over a year ago.

“It’s actually kind of a funny story. We had a few guys who didn’t work out for a couple of reasons and we brought Cesar in last year to help in the barn in New Jersey, but he had very little horse experience. He’s really taken over the role and stepped up to help manage the barn,” explained Kocher. “This is the first show that he’s been able to get to this year and I’m so happy that it was on a night where he could be recognized for his hard work. He’s one of the best guys I’ve ever had work for me.”

The Leading Lady Rider Award presented by realtor Meg Atkinson, was awarded to Laura Kraut (USA) for her consistent top finishes throughout the week in FEI competition. Kraut piloted two mounts to the jump-off in the $130,000 Suncast® Grand Prix FEI CSI 3*, finishing in seventh with Confu and eighth aboard Nouvelle. Kraut also earned a third place finish in the $35,000 1.50m Suncast® Welcome CSI 3* aboard Confu.

The 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District offers six weeks of hunter and jumper competition, including three weeks of internationally recognized FEI show jumping featuring two FEI CSI 3* weeks and an FEI CSI 5*. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

Alex Granato and Criss Cross Wins $8,000 1.40m Open Jumper Classic

Alex Granato and Criss Cross. Photos ©Sportfot.

Taylor Alexander and Gypsy King Impress in U25 Welcome Stake; Daniel Geitner Takes $10,000 Pre-Green Carolinas’ Challenge Cup aboard Walk the Moon

Mill Spring, NC – October 14, 2016 – Alex Granato of Wellington, FL guided Criss Cross to victory in the $8,000 1.40m Open Jumper Classic presented by Nutrena®, earning the first ever victory on the Grass Complex at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). The duo took the win after completing the track in 36.433 seconds, while Emanuel Andrade of Wellington, FL and Cortina 186 followed closely behind to finish in second with a time of 37.256 seconds. Adrienne Sternlicht of Greenwich, CT and Raia D’ Helby collected third place honors with a time of 37.262 seconds.

Granato has been a mainstay at TIEC all circuit, as his farm Mad Season, LLC has been based in Mill Spring, NC since the spring. This is the pair’s first major win this season and Granato was ecstatic with the performance of Criss Cross, as the pair topped a class of 42 entries.

“I am very pleased with him and how he handled the grass. He has experience on grass as a young horse but this was my first time competing with him on grass since we got him last fall,” explained Granato. “He is a very game, careful jumper. We’ve taken our time getting to know him this past season and now we are really starting to hit our stride with him.

“I really liked the course. I thought it was a nice use of the field and asked good questions while still being welcoming to build for the Grand Prix on Sunday,” he added.

The $8,000 1.40m Open Jumper presented by Nutrena® was the first show jumping class to be hosted on the new Grass Complex at TIEC and Granato’s win marked a full circle cycle for the talented rider, who also claimed top honors in the inaugural grand prix class at the venue.

“I’m really excited about getting to win the first open class in the grass complex. We’ve really enjoyed showing at TIEC,” he said. “We’ve shown here off and on since the first set shows and I actually happened to win the inaugural grand prix here as well. We’ve been based here for the summer and it’s a great place to build our younger string of horses.”

Granato has been building a strong string of young horses throughout the year, highlighted by top performances from Criss Cross, as the pair has secured top placings in numerous classes throughout the summer and fall seasons. Granato and team will head to Florida to prepare for a competitive winter circuit after competition concludes at TIEC later this month.

“This series is our last show to wrap up our fall before we head south and rest the horses for the winter circuit. We want to continue strong and finish with confident horses ready to move forward and move up in Wellington,” he concluded.

Adrienne Sternlicht, who is competing at TIEC for the first time this year and has earned top results so far this week, was elated with the opportunity to compete on the new Grass Complex and noted that her horse handled the atmosphere exceedingly well.

“I thought today’s class on the field was great! My horse loves jumping on grass, and the addition of the derby field provides valuable diversity to the show jumping facilities here,” commented Sternlicht. “For me, it allowed me to place my horse in a class where she would be most successful, so hopefully we’ll have a similar result in Sunday’s Grand Prix!”

Taylor Alexander and Gypsy King Impress in U25 Welcome Stake

Taylor Alexander of Castle Rock, CO and Gipsy King earned top honors in the U25 Welcome Stake at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) with a speedy jump-off time of 35.709 seconds. Taylor Land of Atlanta, GA and For Edition took home the red rosette with a time of 36.334 seconds, while Alise Oken of Charlotte, NC and Iraola Del Maset stopped the timers at 38.054 seconds for third.

Taylor Alexander and Gipsy King
Taylor Alexander and Gipsy King

Alexander and Gipsy King, owned by Alexander LLC, have been partners since March of this year. Before traveling to TIEC, the pair competed in Europe this past summer, where they were very successful in multiple 1.40m and 1.45m classes.

Alexander was confident coming into the jump-off with Gipsy King, a Belgian Warmblood gelding (Wandor Van De Mispelaere x Lys De Darmen), having the advantage of already riding the tough track set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) on her first mount Ryanair De Riverland, on whom she placed fourth.

“Ryanair De Riverland is quicker and covers more ground, and I tried to make up my time in the turns but that caused me to have a rail. With Gipsy King, I wanted to do the same thing but not have any down. He spends a little more time in the air and I had to make up more time in the corners,” Alexander said.

“Going twice is definitely an advantage. I already had a feel for the jump-off and I know Gipsy King really well from competing this summer,” she elaborated.

Alexander touched on how she has had to adjust her riding style for Gipsy King because he is very straightforward but is quite sensitive in the mouth.

“I have had to look past the sensitivity, and learning how to ride him well on the flat has helped me tremendously in the show ring,” she explained.

Securing the win and a fourth place finish set Alexander on the right foot as she looks forward to the U25 Grand Prix on Sunday. Alexander and her team will remain in Tryon this weekend and next week for the highly anticipated CSI 5* and are planning to continue contesting the U25 classes.

“This was a great way to start off the weekend, especially looking ahead to the U25 class on Sunday. My horses have not jumped since Gold Cup which was four weeks ago, so this was a positive note to come in on.”

Alexander wrapped up talking about her first time competing at TIEC, saying, “It is really, really nice. This is a great stop for us in the fall.”

Daniel Geitner Takes $10,000 Pre-Green Carolinas’ Challenge Cup aboard Walk the Moon

Daniel Geitner of Aiken, SC and Walk the Moon, owned by Lynn Seithel, took top honors in the $10,000 Pre-Green Carolinas’ Challenge Cup with a two round score of 175. Robert Carey of Bolton, OH guided First Watch, owned by Barbara Mitchell, to a second place finish after receiving a 170.5, while Caroline Weeden of Lake Forest, IL piloted In Time, owned by Glory Days Farm, LLC, to third place with a score of 166.

Geitner and Walk the Moon impressed the judges receiving an 87 in the first round and an 88 in the second round. Carey and First Watch also laid down two smooth courses in the George H. Morris Arena to earn an 86 and 84.5, respectively. Caroline Weeden and In Time also earned two scores about the 80 mark, collecting an 82 and 84 for their efforts.

The 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District offers six weeks of hunter and jumper competition, including three weeks of internationally recognized FEI show jumping featuring two FEI CSI 3* weeks and an FEI CSI 5*. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

Andy Kocher and Zantos II Pave Way to Victory in $35,000 1.50m Suncast Welcome CSI 3*

Andy Kocher and Zantos II. Photo ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – October 13, 2016 – Andy Kocher (USA) and Zantos II made easy work of the track in the $35,000 1.50m Suncast® Welcome CSI 3*, which hosted an impressive 60 entries, to take the win at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). The pair stopped the jump-off timers in 38.458 seconds ahead of Laura Kraut (USA) and Confu, who collected second place with a time of 40.001 seconds. Adam Prudent (FRA) and Victorio 5 earned third place after finishing the course in 42.349 seconds.

Kocher and Zantos II, owned by MKO Equestrian LLC, were trailblazers around the course set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) and were the first pair to secure a fault-free effort in the first round. The duo would later be joined by five combinations who also contested the demanding short course.

“I was really excited with this win. It was a tough class and when I walked I thought it would be one of those classes that would kind of show you where you were at, but it was a solid 1.50m,” said Kocher. “It was not soft in the slightest and was definitely built to the book.”

Kocher has added an element of consistency to his riding, which has been highlighted by several top finishes at major competitions in the United States and Canada this season. The class featured riders from around the world and included numerous Olympians, but Kocher took the pressure in stride, something he noted has improved since last season.

“Last year I would have been like frozen pizza out there with all of those guys. I had a great fall circuit here last year and we competed against some great riders too, but I just feel like now we’re a level up,” he explained. “I walked into the class today feeling like I had a chance to do really well and we did.”

Zantos II, a 2004 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Solitair x Mermus R), is a firecracker of a ride, whose determination and heart outsize his deceivingly petite frame. With Kocher piloting from the irons, the pair has collected top finishes at the American Gold Cup in North Salem, NY, Great Lakes Equestrian Festival in Traverse City, MI, and at Angelstone Tournaments in Rockwood, ON since the gelding was imported from England earlier this season.

“He’s really small. It almost feels like you’re riding a small pony but he is so brave. He thinks he’s 18 hands and is just incredibly careful. He isn’t a horse that naturally jumps 1.50m, but if you set him up right he will always be successful,” he explained.

The pair will now turn their focus to producing a strong finish in the $130,000 Suncast® Grand Prix CSI 3* on Saturday, October 15, before heading to contest the indoor season.

“This class was awesome and I got just about everything out of him. I love competing here and it was a great feeling to come out on top against such a strong field,” added Kocher.

The 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District offers six weeks of hunter and jumper competition, including three weeks of internationally recognized FEI show jumping featuring two FEI CSI 3* weeks and an FEI CSI 5*. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

David Will and Cento Du Rouet Win $35k Horseware Ireland 1.45m Opener CSI 3* at Tryon

David Will and Cento Du Rouet. Photos ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – October 12, 2016 – David Will (GER) and Cento Du Rouet earned a major victory in the $35,000 Horseware® Ireland 1.45m Opener CSI 3* at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), taking their first career win at the venue. Will and Cento Du Rouet crossed through the timers in 63.12 seconds for first place ahead of Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Cornwall who collected second place honors with a time of 63.86 seconds. Will piloted his second mount, Monodie H, to third place after narrowly edging the pursuing field with a time of 64.47 seconds.

Will and Cento Du Rouet, owned by Centin Gungor, took advantage of the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the George H. Morris Arena. Will first guided Monodie H, owned by Dietmar Gugler, around the course set by Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) and felt he better understood the direct routes to take on Cento Du Rouet, which would ultimately secure the pair’s victory.

“With Monodie I took a couple of long ways and I wanted to turn tight with her but not gallop too much. She still went very well, enough to get third,” he said. “I’m very happy with her. With Cento, I wanted to try a little bit more and the course really got better towards the end. He did very well and the win gives me confidence for the rest of the week.”

Will is looking forward to competing in the remainder of FEI classes during Tryon Fall IV and will return with both mounts next week to contest the second FEI CSI 5* of the season at the venue. Off to a strong start, he hopes to continue his success from the first day of competition throughout the rest of the week with both horses.

“I will keep showing both Monodie and Cento in the FEI classes. Both horses will go tomorrow in the Suncast® class and then hopefully I will get to ride both in the bigger class on Saturday,” he said. “This is a really nice place for the horses and it’s very impressive. We’re very excited to be here.”

The partnership with Cento has been fruitful for Will, who took over the ride on the 2007 Oldenburg Springpferd gelding (Chintan x Balou Du Rouet) in early spring. The pair has amassed seven top ten finishes together at the FEI level in Europe so far this year and seems fit for top competition over the course of the next two weeks at TIEC.

“Cento is a real fighter. He always wants to work. He really enjoys it and hates it when he has to stay in the stall. He is always very excited to go in the ring and do his job well,” added Will.

The 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District offers six weeks of hunter and jumper competition, including three weeks of internationally recognized FEI show jumping featuring two FEI CSI 3* weeks and an FEI CSI 5*. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities, please visit www.tryon.com.

Frederik the Great to Make Special Appearance at Tryon Int’l Equestrian Center on Oct. 1

Mill Spring, NC – September 26, 2016 – Frederik the Great, a fifteen-year-old Friesian stallion and internet sensation, will travel to Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) for a special appearance and meet and greet event on Saturday, October 1, during “Saturday Night Lights” after concluding his promotion of the 2016 Rolex Central Park Horse Show and interacting with fans in New York City last week.

“Frederik not only captivates his audience with his breathtaking beauty, but also loves to light up a crowd with his outgoing and charismatic personality,” says Stacy Nazario, owner of Frederik. “We’re very excited to continue his tour and experience the magic of Tryon International Equestrian Center.”

Frederik the Great has amassed over 14 million views on YouTube and is considered by many as “The World’s Most Handsome Horse” trademarked by his thick black mane and muscular build. After starting the week in Manhattan with a special guest appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Frederik took to Wollman Rink in front of swarms of endearing fans to promote the Rolex Central Park Horse Show.

“Frederik’s presence at this year’s Rolex Central Park Horse Show was a display of true beauty and showcased the enchantment of the horse, which we feel is very much paralleled with the atmosphere that has been established at TIEC,” said Katherine Bellissimo, Principal of Tryon Equestrian Partners. “We are looking forward to welcoming Frederik and his team to TIEC in what we believe will be a magical experience for our guests and spectators this Saturday evening.”

Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) will host Frederik the Great during this week’s “Saturday Night Lights” event featuring the $25,000 Adequan® Grand Prix, starting at 7:00 p.m. The beautiful stallion will be presented in the George H. Morris Arena with owner Stacey Nazario and handler Jessica Ray. Frederik will also be available for a meet and greet session for spectators and admirers at 5:30 p.m. ahead of the start of the grand prix.

For more information about Frederik the Great, please click here. For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center, please visit www.tryon.com.

Tryon International Equestrian Center to Host “Sounds of Nashville” Concert on September 3

Mill Spring, NC – August 23, 2016 – Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) is celebrating the culmination of the Nutrena® USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Land Rover from Wednesday, August 31, through Sunday, September 4, with a free “Sounds of Nashville” concert presented by Coca Cola® on Saturday, Sept. 3. “Raised by the Radio” star Mitch Rossell, who has opened for the legendary Garth Brooks, is headlining the concert at 8:00 p.m. Country music singer Julia Cole, who has opened for country music sensation Hunter Hayes, will go on at 6:30 p.m. General admission to the concert is free and open to the public with gates opening at 5:00 p.m. VIP tickets for seating in the Legends Club and Sky Deck are available for purchase by visiting www.tryon.com.

To celebrate the inaugural hosting of the 2016 Nutrena® USEA American Event Championships presented by Land Rover at TIEC, the venue will host a free concert featuring Nashville country music singers, autograph sessions with the top level United States eventing riders, and free, family-friendly entertainment.

Celebrity Bartender Showdown

Prior to the concert at 6:00 p.m., TIEC will host a “Celebrity Bartender Showdown” featuring many of Team USA’s best eventing athletes including Boyd Martin, Lauren Kieffer, and Bobby Costello. The celebrity bartenders will mix specialty cocktails and sign autographs to help raise money for Brooke USA. For every $9 raised, a working donkey or equine in drought-ridden Ethiopia will be provided with a lifetime water supply. Donkeys and equines are the livelihood of families in this region of the world.

American Eventing Championships

The Nutrena® USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Land Rover, beginning on Wednesday, August 31, through Sunday, September 4, is the annual championship for each level of the sport of eventing offered in the United States. The public is invited to watch competitions and attend celebratory events throughout the week including the “Welcome Party” on Wednesday, August 31, the “Cleghorn Adult Shoot Out” on Thursday, September 1, “Dinner & a Movie” on Friday, September 2, and the “Sounds of Nashville” concert presented by Coca Cola® on Saturday, September 3. Tickets are required for some events and can be purchased at: www.AECTryon.eventbrite.com.

For more information about Tryon International Equestrian Center, please call (828) 863-1000 or visit www.tryon.com.

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl Win the $216,000 Tryon Estates Grand Prix CSI 4*

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl (photo courtesy of Liz Crawley Photography).

Tryon, North Carolina (July 26, 2016) — Todd Minikus and his champion mare, Quality Girl, are not new faces to the winner’s circle. This week, the dynamic team won blue yet again by being the only double clear in the $216,000 Tryon Estates Grand Prix CSI 4*. After the victory, Minikus paused to thank his staff and family for the role they play in his ongoing success. “You have to have a top team. My wife, the girls that work for us, and all of our supporters and sponsors put in so much effort. It’s always a great feeling to finish on top because it’s a testament to their hard work, too.” Not only is Minikus surrounded by a strong staff but he is also supported by sponsors that help him keep his horses competition ready.

Minikus and Quality Girl have a long history of success together. The pair has won many Grand Prix classes, including three back-to-back wins this spring at the Kentucky Spring Classic at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. “Quality Girl jumped fantastic tonight,” Minikus noted after the $216,000 Tryon Estates Grand Prix CSI 4*. “It felt so solid the whole way around that I never even questioned if she would rub a jump. She really was on her job tonight. You know, she’s tough. She has an opinion about everything and you have to pick and choose your battles with her. She’s a pure winner, though, and has been that way since the day we got her.”

The 13-year-old Oldenburg mare (Quidams Rubin x Dobrock), owned by the Quality Group, has just recently begun jumping again after being sidelined with a minor injury at the beginning of the Tryon Summer Series. “I am really lucky that I have a great team of veterinarians and farriers that are ready at a moment’s notice to help my horses recover from the stresses of showing,” remarked Minikus. “I also have great sponsors that provide me with products that keep my horses in top condition and allow me to compete consistently at the top level.”

In line with his ‘it takes a village’ mentality, Minikus has amassed an impressive group of sponsors that provide him access to the latest trends in equine therapy. Theraplate Revolution Therapy Platforms’ state of the art equipment helps to increase circulation and reduce inflammation in his string of competitive show jumpers. Horseware Ireland not only keeps Team Minikus looking stylish with custom blankets but they also provide them with products like IceVibe Boots to help the horses recover after a strenuous work out. Schneiders Tack supplies quality products like LaserWrap bandages to help the horses recover from injury and increase bone health. Draper Therapies and Accuhorsemat also provide Minikus with products that help keep his horses happy, healthy, and sound.

While at home in Wellington, Florida, Premier Equestrian provides Team Minikus with state-of-the-art footing and durable jumps to train with, making show preparation easy.

The top equine nutritional feed company, Purina, has been one of team Minikus’ longest supporters and supplies him with top quality grain to give his horses the energy they need to compete all year long. Vita Flex, an industry leader in equine nutritional supplements, also supports Minikus and makes sure that his horses get complete care from the inside out.

Other sponsors of Minikus’ include Charles Owen helmets, CWD saddles, Neue Schule bits which all provide products that enable Minikus and his horses to perform at their best while staying in style with the latest equipment. “It absolutely takes a village to keep this train moving,” smiled Minikus.

After four weeks of international competition, the summer series at the Tryon International Equestrian Center has come to a close. Next, Minikus and Two Swans Farm’s Babalou 41 will head to Bromont, Quebec to compete in the Bromont CSI-3* World Cup Qualifying event. This is a highly anticipated event for Minikus, as he has made attending the 2017 World Cup finals in Omaha, Nebraska a priority because of his mid-western roots. “That is my home turf and it would be really special for me to compete there,” Minikus said. Following the Bromont CSI-3*, Minikus will head to HITS on the Hudson in Saugerties, New York before finally making his way to Bridgehampton, New York to compete in the famed Hampton Classic Horse Show.

Todd Minikus Show Stables offers sales and training services just minutes from Wellington, Florida’s Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) show grounds. To learn about the services Minikus offers or to follow the action as Team Minikus competes around the globe, check out Todd Minikus on Facebook and Instagram, or visit www.ToddMinikusShowJumping.com.

Contact: Amanda Minikus
amandajl16@aol.com
562-762-3762
www.toddminikus.com

Angel Karolyi and Indiana 127 Win $35,000 1.50m Suncast Classic CSI 4* at Tryon

Angel Karolyi and Indiana 127. Photo ©LizCrawleyPhotography.

Mill Spring, NC – July 24, 2016 Angel Karolyi (VEN) and Indiana 127 made the most out of the last day of competition at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), dominating the $35,000 1.50m Suncast® Classic CSI 4* in the George H. Morris Arena to close out the fourth and final week of the Tryon Summer Series. Karolyi and Indiana 127 took center stage as the last pair in the jump-off, securing a faultless round and a winning time of 36.805 seconds. Earning second place was Margie Engle (USA) and her ride Abunola, who crossed the timers in 37.129 seconds, while third place honors were awarded to David Blake (IRL) and Binkie who clinched their third place finish with a time of 40.662 seconds.

The pair was one of four combinations to advance to the jump-off round and the duo was faced with three fast competitors in Engle, Blake, and Parot. Karolyi and Indiana 127, a 2002 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Indoctro x Voltaire) owned by Hollow Creek Farm, have been teamed together for four years and have earned multiple wins since the beginning of their partnership.

“We won the first major class I competed in with Indiana 127. We then went on to have a very successful 2014 season together, which included wins at Spruce Meadows, as well as a campaign in Europe,” he explained. “I felt that after all of the continued success he had earned himself a well-deserved break.”

Karolyi continued to narrate the story of Indiana 127, adding, “I kept him in a program during this past WEF to stay fit and then he proved to me he was ready to move up to the international level and contest FEI classes. I had a plan for this week, which included finishing up with this class and it worked out well for us.”

Karolyi went on to speak of the first round track and jump-off designed by Catsy Cruz (MEX), which saw four combinations move forward to a competitive test of the short course.

“The first round walked pretty straight forward. In the jump-off, I walked fences one to two and there were eight steps there, but I decided to do nine considering the turn we had to tackle on the landing side,” detailed Karolyi. “I have to always go a little wide on a rollback back to an oxer to give him more room and momentum to clear the back rail.”

“I galloped everywhere I could, and honestly, I got a bit lucky. Going into the last line I even lost my left stirrup, and hoped for the best. The last two days I thought I was a little bit unlucky with him, but today my luck turned around,” he smiled.

Karolyi and his team are thrilled for the opportunity to travel to The Colorado Horse Park (CHP) for the Adequan®/FEI North American Junior Young Rider Championships presented by Gotham North (NAJYRC) this coming week, but are set with plans to return to TIEC for the 2016 Tryon Fall Series to begin later this season.

“I am very excited to go to The Colorado Horse Park and see how it has been upgraded this past year. I would love to compete there in the future,” commented Karolyi. “At the same time, I am very excited about returning to TIEC in the fall. I am beginning to put a string of horses together that are well suited for these high level classes and it really comes down to hard work.”

Karolyi made mention of the emotional importance of the win for him personally, as it was his first international victory since his close friend and Venezuelan teammate Andres Rodriguez passed away.

“My friends and family here have been celebrating him this week and all I can say is I hope he heard our anthem up there and was smiling.”

Molly Hay and her own Akatschino topped the $10,000 High Junior/Amateur Owner Classic presented by Asheville Regional Airport, finishing the jump-off track in 38.754 seconds. Haley Gassel and her own Quite Dark 2 collected second place with a time of 38.382 seconds and four faults, while Haley Schaufeld and Harley 86, owned by River Farm Sporthorses, took third place honors, finishing with four faults and a time of 39.506 seconds.

Sunday’s classes concluded competition at the 2016 Tryon Summer Series, which featured four consecutive weeks of FEI competition. The venue will welcome the United States Pony Club Championships East beginning Wednesday, July 27, and continuing through Sunday, July 31. All events throughout the week are free and open to the public. For more information on TIEC and to see a full list of results, please visit www.tryon.com.